Welcome to The Cloud 5, our weekly feature where we scour the web searching for the five most intriguing and poignant cloud links we can find.
Before we jump into this week's links, please have a look at one of our recent blog posts,The cloud is no longer a pie-in-the-sky idea. At one time not that long ago, the cloud was a radical notion. Today, large companies like Netflix and GE are all in, and cloud vendors like Salesforce and AWS are approaching $7 billion in annual revenue.
And without further delay, here we go with this week's links:
It was a good news/bad news kind of revenue report for IBM this week. On the bad side, it was the 15th straight quarter of sliding revenue, which is never good. On the plus side, combined cloud revenue passed $10 billion for the quarter.
The cloud is a bargain, but it's not cheap | Infoworld
The cost of the services themselves are cheap and getting cheaper, but that doesn't mean that the management, support, and risk mitigation costs go away. As with any digital transformation, there are certain costs that digital transformation doesn't eliminate.
Alibaba has had its eye on cloud computing for some time. It's been investing money and building data centers around the world. This week, it teamed with Nvidia on its cloud computing efforts, along with artificial intelligence and big data, and made another billion-dollar bet.
Speaking of that magic billion dollar number, Microsoft pledged a billion dollars in free cloud services to 70,000 nonprofits over the next three years. The bottom line is while this largesse could help these organizations by providing free services, it could also help Microsoft build loyalty on its cloud services. Of course, as the author points out, what happens when the three years are over?
Meanwhile back in Redmond, Microsoft was cutting its Azure prices (even while it was giving away a billion dollars worth of those services). Some prices were cut at least 17 percent, and Microsoft pledged to keep prices competitive with those other cloud companies out there.
Photo Credit: Ron Miller. Used under CC 2.0 license.